oversight

Combat Air Power: Joint Assessment of Air Superiority Can Be Improved

Published by the Government Accountability Office on 1997-02-26.

Below is a raw (and likely hideous) rendition of the original report. (PDF)

                  United States General Accounting Office

GAO               Report to Congressional Committees




February 1997
                  COMBAT AIR POWER
                  Joint Assessment of Air
                  Superiority Can Be
                  Improved




GAO/NSIAD-97-77
      United States
GAO   General Accounting Office
      Washington, D.C. 20548

      National Security and
      International Affairs Division

      B-260442

      February 26, 1997

      Congressional Committees

      The Department of Defense (DOD) plans to spend over $43 billion from fiscal year 1996 to fiscal
      year 2001 to acquire weapon systems to equip and modernize forces for the air superiority
      missions. DOD will face difficult decisions as it attempts to cover the high cost of these and other
      defense acquisitions while the nation is moving toward a balanced budget.

      This is an unclassified version of a classified report we recently issued to you. It evaluates the
      air superiority missions to identify the overlap among the military services’ planned capabilities
      and to determine whether the joint warfighting assessment process relating to air superiority
      was useful to assist in making program and budget decisions about these programs. This
      evaluation is one of six individual air power evaluations that we have conducted over the past
      2 years.

      We believe the concerns identified in this report—namely that the joint warfighting assessment
      needs to cover a longer period, include cost-effectiveness analyses of alternative means to
      achieve U.S. objectives, identify unnecessary overlap and duplication, and address major issues
      such as the need to acquire three new tactical fighters (F/A-18E/F, F-22, and Joint Strike
      Fighter)—should be addressed as part of DOD’s efforts to improve its analytical support for
      overall decision-making. We are addressing this report to you because of your oversight
      responsibility for defense issues and budgets and your interest in this important subject.

      Please contact me at (202) 512-4841 if you or your staff have any questions concerning this
      report. Major contributors to this report are listed in appendix IV.




      Louis J. Rodrigues
      Director, Defense Acquisitions Issues
B-260442

List of Congressional Committees

The Honorable Strom Thurmond
Chairman
The Honorable Carl Levin
Ranking Minority Member
Committee on Armed Services
United States Senate

The Honorable Ted Stevens
Chairman
The Honorable Daniel K. Inouye
Ranking Minority Member
Subcommittee on Defense
Committee on Appropriations
United States Senate

The Honorable Floyd Spence
Chairman
The Honorable Ronald V. Dellums
Ranking Minority Member
Committee on National Security
House of Representatives

The Honorable C.W. Bill Young
Chairman
The Honorable John P. Murtha
Ranking Minority Member
Subcommittee on National Security
Committee on Appropriations
House of Representatives




                    Page 2          GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
B-260442




           Page 3   GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
Executive Summary


             One of the primary objectives that U.S. combat air power is expected to
Purpose      achieve is air superiority. Achieving air superiority permits operations in
             the air and on land and sea without prohibitive interference from an
             enemy’s air forces, cruise missiles, and theater ballistic missiles. The
             Persian Gulf War clearly demonstrated the superior U.S. and coalition
             forces’ capability to quickly achieve air superiority by paralyzing Iraqi air
             defenses and dominating the air-to-air battle.

             The Department of Defense (DOD) plans to spend over $43 billion from
             fiscal year 1996 to fiscal year 2001 to acquire weapon systems to equip and
             modernize forces for the air superiority mission. Because of the large
             investment planned during the next several years and pursuant to its basic
             legislative authority, GAO evaluated the air superiority mission to
             (1) identify the overlap among the military services’ planned capabilities
             and (2) determine whether the joint warfighting assessment process
             relating to air superiority was useful to assist in making program and
             budget decisions about these capabilities.1 This is an unclassified version
             of an earlier classified report on this subject.


             Congress has recognized that each service’s military missions and the
Background   capabilities of the services to accomplish those missions overlap one
             another, at least to some degree. To achieve a stronger joint orientation in
             DOD, Congress enacted the Goldwater-Nichols Department of Defense
             Reorganization Act of 1986. This act gave the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs
             of Staff and the commanders in chief (CINC) of the combatant commands
             stronger roles in DOD matters, including the acquisition process. In this
             role, the Chairman is expected to advise the Secretary of Defense on the
             priority of requirements identified by the CINCs and the extent to which
             service program recommendations and budget proposals conform with
             these priorities. The Chairman is also expected to submit to the Secretary
             alternative program recommendations and budget proposals to achieve
             conformance with CINC priorities. Subsequent legislation has given the
             Chairman additional responsibilities to examine ways DOD can eliminate or
             reduce duplicative capabilities and to assess military requirements for
             defense acquisition programs from a joint warfighting military perspective.

             To assist the Chairman, the Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff
             established in 1994 the joint warfighting capability assessment process.

             1
              Similar evaluations were conducted on interdiction, close support, air refueling, suppression of enemy
             air defenses, and surveillance and reconnaissance missions. A culminating report entitled Combat Air
             Power: Joint Mission Assessments Needed Before Making Program and Budget Decisions
             (GAO/NSIAD-96-177, Sept. 20, 1996) built on and synthesized the findings of these six evaluations.



             Page 4                                                        GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
                                             Executive Summary




                                             The Vice Chairman looked to the process to produce the information the
                                             Chairman needs to meet his program review and assessment
                                             responsibilities and to resolve cross-service requirements issues, eliminate
                                             duplicate programs, and pursue opportunities for enhancing the
                                             interoperability of weapon systems.

                                             Air superiority, the subject of this report, is the degree of dominance one
                                             force possesses over another in the air, governing the extent to which air,
                                             ground, and sea forces can achieve campaign objectives. DOD analytically
                                             divided the achievement of air superiority into two offensive and three
                                             defensive missions. Figure 1 shows that alignment of missions.



Figure 1: The Missions of Air Superiority




                                            Attain air superiority


              Conduct offensive                                        Conduct defensive
                 operations                                               operations


           Defeat enemy fighters                                     Defeat enemy aircraft

      Defeat enemy surface-to-air                                    Defeat enemy cruise
               defenses                                                   missiles
                                                                     Defeat enemy theater
                                                                       ballistic missiles




                                             Page 5                                        GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
                   Executive Summary




                   For fiscal years 1996-2001, DOD plans to apply most of its acquisition
                   funding for air superiority systems to aircraft to defeat enemy fighters and
                   aircraft and to defensive systems to defeat enemy theater ballistic missiles.

                   The air superiority joint warfighting assessment team evaluated the
                   services’ joint capabilities by evaluating nine functions that must be
                   accomplished to successfully achieve the objectives of each mission. DOD
                   has termed this an “end-to-end” assessment. Overall, the team concluded
                   that the capabilities to achieve the five air superiority missions were
                   marginal, or acceptable with some risk, through 2001. A formal assessment
                   report was not done. Although a team spokesman said the team made
                   recommendations to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff for
                   preparation of the Chairman’s program assessment, he would not share
                   the recommendations with us.


                   The services have overlapping capabilities for achieving each of the five
Results in Brief   component missions of air superiority. For example, every service has
                   weapon systems that perform some portion of each of the five missions
                   except for the conduct of offensive operations to defeat enemy fighters in
                   enemy territory, for which the Army has no capability. Overlaps exist
                   primarily in the systems to defeat enemy aircraft and ballistic missile
                   systems. While some degree of overlapping capabilities may be necessary
                   and/or unavoidable, DOD has not determined how best to reduce overlaps
                   in the post-Cold War era without unnecessary effects on force capabilities.

                   The process used by DOD’s air superiority joint warfighting capabilities
                   assessment team to make its assessment provided a useful, though limited,
                   result and used a meaningful method of displaying the results. An
                   unclassified summary of the ratings assigned to 45 capabilities
                   (9 functional elements, such as detecting targets and engaging targets, for
                   each of the 5 missions) is shown in figure 2.




                   Page 6                                        GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
                               Executive Summary




Figure 2: Summary of Ratings
Assigned to Air Superiority
Capabilities
                               Acceptable 31




                                                                                         Inadequate 5




                                                                 Adequate 9




                               The team identified several functions for which joint capabilities were
                               determined to be inadequate. DOD classified the descriptions of the
                               inadequate capabilities.

                               Although the assessment pointed out several inadequacies in existing
                               forces, it did not adequately address several major issues regarding the
                               overlap of capabilities, priorities of future acquisitions of air superiority
                               weapon systems, or alternative means of meeting the highest priority
                               requirements. Further, it did not assign ratings of warfighting capability
                               over a long enough period of time to be useful for establishing acquisition
                               and budget priorities.

                               The assessment did not examine certain key issues related to the
                               modernization of forces for the air superiority mission. For example, the
                               assessment was limited to the 6-year period, fiscal year 1996 to fiscal
                               year 2001, and many of the weapon systems being planned were not
                               included in the assessment because they are in development and were not




                               Page 7                                         GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
                              Executive Summary




                              scheduled to be available in the active force until after fiscal year 2001.
                              Further, the results of the assessment indicate that the acquisition of
                              major aircraft systems like the F-22 may not be justified because
                              acquisition of new aircraft is not clearly related to the functions rated
                              inadequate by the joint assessment team.

                              Other critical issues that were not evaluated during the assessment include
                              the need for and affordability of the acquisition of three new tactical
                              fighters (F/A-18E/F, F-22, and Joint Strike Fighter), appropriate timing for
                              replacing F-15s with F-22s, the need to replace each F-15 with an F-22, the
                              operational utility of the F/A-18E/F compared with the F/A-18C/D, and the
                              appropriate size and makeup of the forces to be acquired for theater
                              ballistic missile defense.



Principal Findings

Services Have Overlapping     Overlapping capability among the services exists in each of the five air
Capabilities to Perform Air   superiority missions. Aircraft used for air superiority were generally
Superiority Missions          developed by one of the services for use within that service except for the
                              recent initiative to acquire a Joint Strike Fighter for use by the Air Force,
                              the Navy, and the Marine Corps. Systems in inventory in 1996 with
                              capability to defeat enemy aircraft include the Navy F-14, the Air Force
                              F-15 and F-16, the Marine Corps F-18 and AV-8B, and several Army
                              surface-to-air missile systems. Most of the aircraft in the inventory have a
                              primary mission other than air superiority but have a significant air
                              superiority capability. The Air Force is developing the F-22 and it is
                              expected to be in service in 2004, the Navy is beginning procurement of
                              the F/A-18E/F in fiscal year 1997, and the Air Force, the Navy, and the
                              Marine Corps have begun development of the Joint Strike Fighter.

                              Several systems are commonly used among the services. They consist
                              primarily of missiles that are developed in joint program offices under DOD
                              direction. For the most part, however, aircraft have been acquired that are
                              used only by a single service. The only current exception is the F/A-18
                              used by both the Navy and the Marine Corps.

                              Each service is developing its own equipment to defend against theater
                              ballistic missiles, and as a result, there is an overlap of capabilities
                              planned. Nine systems currently in development could cost an estimated




                              Page 8                                         GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
                          Executive Summary




                          $71 billion if all are produced. Overlapping systems include the Patriot
                          Advanced Capability Level 3, the Medium Extended Air Defense System,
                          the Improved Hawk, the Theater High Altitude Air Defense System, and
                          the Navy Area System, all of which are intended to intercept enemy
                          theater ballistic missile systems in the terminal phase of their flight to their
                          target. Even though there is substantial overlap of capabilities among air
                          superiority systems, the joint warfighting capabilities assessment did not
                          evaluate the degree of overlap and duplication among these systems or the
                          other existing or planned systems that perform the air superiority
                          missions.


The Joint Warfighting     The joint warfighting capabilities assessment process has the potential to
Capabilities Assessment   provide decisionmakers better insight into the capabilities of the entire
Did Not Adequately        U.S. military force to perform particular missions. GAO recognizes that it
                          will take some time for this process to mature. The methodology used in
Address Some Key Issues   the air superiority assessment had significant limitations and did not
                          address key issues confronting the air superiority missions. Further, the
                          assessment offers little information to achieve one of its objectives, which
                          was to assist in making program and budget decisions. One limitation is
                          the relatively short period of time, 6 years, covered by the assessments.
                          Most major weapon acquisition programs last over 10 years, and
                          intelligence estimates of the projected threat may cover as much as
                          15 years. Thus, this assessment may not include the impact of significant
                          changes in the U.S. weapon capabilities or significant changes in the
                          projected threat expected to come about after the 6-year period.

                          Other limitations are that the assessments do not identify the extent of
                          overlap among air superiority systems, nor do they evaluate the
                          cost-effectiveness of alternative weapon mixes. Further, the assessments
                          did not address several other key issues. For example, a major issue
                          confronting DOD and Congress is the need to pursue and the affordability
                          of, as currently planned, three new tactical aircraft programs that will cost
                          an estimated $355.7 billion. It is crucial to address this issue through an
                          aggregate assessment of the quantity of U.S. aircraft with air superiority
                          capabilities compared to potential adversaries. For example, the United
                          States has over 2,000 frontline fighters (F-14s, F-15s, F-16s, and F-18s), but
                          potential adversaries have few. An aggregate assessment of capabilities is
                          absent from the joint warfighting capabilities assessment. This report
                          identifies additional key issues involving the air superiority missions that
                          must be addressed.




                          Page 9                                          GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
                       Executive Summary




                       GAO is not making new recommendations in this report. In its overall
Recommendations        report on combat air power, GAO recommended that the Secretary of
                       Defense, along with the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, develop an
                       assessment process that yields more comprehensive information in key
                       mission areas. In making this recommendation, GAO includes the offensive
                       and defensive aspects of the air superiority mission and the results of this
                       review of the assessments conducted by the joint warfighting capability
                       assessment team. GAO said the recommended process could be achieved
                       by broadening the joint warfighting capability assessments or developing
                       an alternative mechanism. DOD partially concurred with the
                       recommendation, agreeing that analytical support for overall
                       decision-making can be improved, but disagreeing that the Secretary is
                       currently receiving inadequate advice from a joint perspective.

                       In DOD’s assessments of air superiority mission areas, GAO believes the
                       concerns identified in this report—namely that the assessments need to
                       cover a longer period, include cost-effectiveness analyses of alternative
                       means to achieve U.S. objectives, identify unnecessary overlap and
                       duplication, and address major issues set forth in chapter 3—should be
                       addressed as part of DOD’s efforts to implement GAO’s prior
                       recommendation.


                       In commenting on a draft of the classified version of this report, DOD
Agency Comments        agreed that overlap exists among the air superiority missions but stated
and GAO’s Evaluation   that the overlap among the Army’s theater ballistic missile defense
                       systems is by design. DOD further agreed that analytical support for overall
                       decision-making can be improved. GAO believes many of DOD’s other
                       comments were not clearly related to the central message in this report.

                       DOD  stated that it disagreed with assertions that it believes are included in
                       the report and in a prior report, Combat Air Power: Joint Mission
                       Assessments Needed Before Making Program and Budget Decisions,
                       (GAO/NSIAD-96-177, Sept. 20, 1996). DOD said that GAO implies that the threat
                       does not warrant investment, and that air power is not important. Neither
                       report makes such assertions. The intent of this report is to show overlap
                       in air superiority capabilities and to raise specific issues that future joint
                       assessments of the air superiority mission could address to improve the
                       analytical support for decisionmakers.

                       DOD   also believes that this report leaves a misleading impression that the
                       DOD   processes used to develop modernization plans are inadequate. This



                       Page 10                                        GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
Executive Summary




report identifies equipment overlap among the air superiority missions and
ways to make the joint warfighting capabilities assessment of the air
superiority missions more useful to decisionmakers. This report is not
intended to be a comprehensive evaluation of DOD processes for
developing modernization plans, but suggests that the air superiority joint
warfighting capabilities assessment can be improved to better support the
DOD processes used to develop modernization plans.


DOD further takes the opportunity in its comments to point out an apparent
change in DOD mission descriptions by stating that it wants not only air
superiority but also air dominance, and that its modernization program is
designed to maintain air dominance. However, DOD did not provide a clear
description of the differences between air superiority and air dominance
or the additional capabilities it believes are justified because of this
undefined change of mission objectives.

DOD’scomments and GAO’s detailed evaluation of the comments are in
appendix III.




Page 11                                      GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
Contents



Executive Summary                                                                                   4


Chapter 1                                                                                          14
                        Congressional Mandate to Assess Defense Acquisitions From a                14
Introduction              Joint Warfighting Perspective
                        Joint Warfighting Capability Assessment Process Established to             15
                          Improve Joint Perspective
                        Objectives, Scope, and Methodology                                         15

Chapter 2                                                                                          19
                        Air Superiority Includes Five Missions                                     19
The Services Have       Funding Planned for Air Superiority Missions                               19
Overlapping             Overlap Among Services’ Performance of the Air Superiority                 20
                          Missions
Capabilities to
Perform Air
Superiority Missions
Chapter 3                                                                                          24
                        Joint Staff Rated Overall Air Superiority Capability as Acceptable         25
Air Superiority Joint     With Some Risk
Warfighting             The 1995 Air Superiority Joint Warfighting Assessment Has                  26
                          Limitations and Did Not Address Major Issues
Assessment Did Not      Conclusions                                                                29
Adequately Address
Some Key Issues
Appendixes              Appendix I: Services’ Identification of Capabilities for Achieving         32
                          Air Superiority
                        Appendix II: Funding for Missions of Air Superiority                       42
                        Appendix III: Comments From the Department of Defense                      45
                        Appendix IV: Major Contributors to This Report                             53

Related GAO Products                                                                               56


Tables                  Table 2.1: Approximate DOD Future Years Defense Program                    20
                          Acquisition Funding for the Missions of Air Superiority, as of
                          June 1995




                        Page 12                                       GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
          Contents




          Table 2.2: Services’ Capability to Perform Air Superiority               21
            Missions
          Table 2.3: Fighter Aircraft in Service or Being Acquired That Have       22
            Capability to Accomplish Air Superiority Missions Against Enemy
            Fighters and Other Aircraft
          Table 2.4: Theater Ballistic Missile Defense Systems                     23
          Table I.1: Platforms Contributing to Air Superiority                     32
          Table 1.2: Missiles and Munitions Contributing to Air Superiority        36
          Table II.1: Approximate DOD Future Year Defense Program                  42
            Acquisition Funding for the Missions of Air Superiority, as of
            June 1995
          Table II.2: Approximate DOD Future Year Defense Program                  44
            Funding for Weapon Systems With Some Capability, Not Primary
            Responsibility, for the Missions of Air Superiority

Figures   Figure 1: The Missions of Air Superiority                                 5
          Figure 2: Summary of Ratings Assigned to Air Superiority                  7
            Capabilities




          Abbreviations

          CINC       commander in chief
          DIA        Defense Intelligence Agency
          DOD        Department of Defense
          GAO        General Accounting Office
          JROC       Joint Requirements Oversight Council
          JSF        Joint Strike Fighter
          JWCA       Joint Warfighting Capabilities Assessment


          Page 13                                     GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
Chapter 1

Introduction


                       Sweeping changes in the global threat environment, sizable reductions in
                       resources devoted to defense, technological advancements in combat
                       systems, and other factors have significantly affected the Department of
                       Defense’s (DOD) combat air power. Ensuring that the most cost-effective
                       mix of combat air power capabilities is identified, developed, and fielded
                       to conduct effective, joint military operations in such an environment is a
                       major challenge that will confront DOD and Congress for years to come.

                       This report, which focuses on air superiority, is one of a series that
                       examines the overall air power of the United States. The other reports in
                       the series concentrate on interdiction, close support, defeat of enemy
                       surface-to-air defenses, surveillance and reconnaissance, and air refueling.
                       A culminating report, which builds on and synthesizes the findings of
                       these six evaluations, was issued on September 20, 1996.1


                       Traditionally, the individual services have been the dominant players in
Congressional          the acquisition process based on their broad responsibilities to organize,
Mandate to Assess      train, and equip their forces under title 10 of the U.S. Code. However, to
Defense Acquisitions   achieve a stronger joint orientation in DOD, Congress enacted the
                       Goldwater-Nichols Department of Defense Reorganization Act of 1986.
From a Joint           This act gave the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the
Warfighting            commanders in chief (CINC)2 of the combatant commands stronger roles in
                       DOD matters, including the acquisition process. As principal military
Perspective            adviser to the Secretary of Defense, the Chairman is now expected to
                       advise the Secretary on the priority of requirements identified by the CINCs
                       and the extent to which service program recommendations and budget
                       proposals conform with these priorities. The Chairman is also expected to
                       submit to the Secretary alternative program recommendations and budget
                       proposals to achieve greater conformance with CINC priorities. The
                       National Defense Authorization Acts for Fiscal Years 1993 and 1996 have
                       given the Chairman additional responsibilities to examine ways DOD can
                       eliminate or reduce duplicate capabilities and to assess military
                       requirements for defense acquisition programs from a joint warfighting
                       perspective.



                       1
                        Combat Air Power: Joint Mission Assessments Needed Before Making Program and Budget Decisions
                       (GAO/NSIAD-96-177, Sept. 20, 1996).
                       2
                       CINCs of: (1) Atlantic Command, (2) Central Command, (3) European Command, (4) Forces
                       Command, (5) Pacific Command, (6) Southern Command, (7) Space Command, (8) Special Operations
                       Command, (9) Strategic Command, and (10) Transportation Command. CINCs are responsible for
                       military operations in their geographic region or functional area.



                       Page 14                                                  GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
                        Chapter 1
                        Introduction




                        According to the 1995 National Military Strategy, major modernization
                        programs involving significant investments are to be undertaken only
                        when there is “clearly a substantial payoff.” To evaluate the merits of the
                        services’ weapon investment proposals, programs, and budgets, various
                        entities within the Office of the Secretary of Defense, such as the Director
                        of the Program Analysis and Evaluation, provide the Secretary
                        independent analyses. The Joint Requirements Oversight Council (JROC)
                        assists the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff in carrying out his
                        responsibilities. This assistance includes identifying and assessing the
                        priority of the joint military requirements (including existing systems and
                        equipment), ensuring that the assignment of program priorities reflects
                        projected resource levels, and considering alternatives to any acquisition
                        program identified to meet military needs.


                        To assist the JROC in advising the Chairman and the Secretary on joint
Joint Warfighting       warfighting capabilities, the joint warfighting capabilities assessment
Capability Assessment   (JWCA) process was initiated in April 1994. Under this process,
Process Established     10 assessment teams have been established in selected mission areas, 1 of
                        which is air superiority. The intent of JWCA is to continuously assess
to Improve Joint        available information on the services’ respective joint capabilities to
Perspective             identify opportunities to improve warfighting effectiveness. A Joint Staff
                        official who participated in conducting JWCA for the air superiority mission
                        told us that the purpose of this assessment was not to identify overlap and
                        unnecessary duplication among the services.

                        In expanding the JROC process, including the establishment of the JWCA
                        teams, it was envisioned that the JROC would be more than simply another
                        military committee on which members participate strictly as
                        representatives of their services. Recommendations coming from the JROC
                        would not simply reflect the sum of each service’s requirements. Rather,
                        the JROC, with the support of the JWCA process, would produce joint
                        information the Chairman needs to meet his program review and
                        assessment responsibilities and to resolve cross-service requirements
                        issues, eliminate duplicative programs, and pursue opportunities to
                        enhance the interoperability of weapon systems.


                        Because of the large planned investment during the next several years and
Objectives, Scope,      pursuant to our basic legislative responsibility, we evaluated the air
and Methodology         superiority mission (1) to identify the overlap among the military services’
                        planned capabilities and (2) to determine whether the joint warfighting



                        Page 15                                       GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
    Chapter 1
    Introduction




    assessment process was useful to assist in making program and budget
    decisions about these capabilities.

    We visited or obtained information from the following organizations:

    Air Force Organizations

•   Headquarters, Air Force Materiel Command, Wright-Patterson Air Force
    Base, Ohio.
•   Headquarters, Air Force Air Combat Command, Langley Air Force Base,
    Virginia.
•   Office of the Assistant Secretary of the Air Force (Acquisition),
    Washington, D.C.
•   Air Force Roles and Missions Office, Washington, D.C.
•   National Air Intelligence Center, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio.
•   Airborne Laser Program Office, Albuquerque, New Mexico.
•   F-15 System Program Office, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio.
•   F-16 System Program Office, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio.
•   F-22 System Program Office, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio.

    Navy Organizations

•   Department of the Navy, Washington, D.C.
•   Office of the Chief of Naval Operations, Washington, D.C.
•   Office of Naval Intelligence, Washington, D.C.
•   F/A-18 Program Office, Washington, D.C.
•   F-14 Program Office, Washington, D.C.
•   Marine Corps Systems Command, Quantico, Virginia.

    Army Organizations

•   Office of the Army Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations and Plans,
    Washington, D.C.
•   Army Space and Strategic Command, Huntsville, Alabama.
•   Medium Extended Air Defense System Project Office, Huntsville, Alabama.
•   Theater High Altitude Air Defense Project Office, Huntsville, Alabama.
•   Patriot Project Office, Huntsville, Alabama.
•   Army Research Development and Engineering Center, Redstone Arsenal,
    Alabama.
•   Forward Area Air Defense Project Office, Redstone Arsenal, Alabama.
•   Weapon Systems Management Directorate, Redstone Arsenal, Alabama.
•   Army Air Defense Artillery School, Fort Bliss, Texas.



    Page 16                                      GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
    Chapter 1
    Introduction




•   Patriot Advanced Capability 3 Project Office, Huntsville, Alabama.

    Other DOD Organizations

•   Office of the Secretary of Defense, Washington, D.C.
•   Ballistic Missile Defense Organization, Washington, D.C.
•   Defense Intelligence Agency, Washington, D.C.
•   U.S. Central Command, Tampa, Florida.
•   U.S. Pacific Command, Honolulu, Hawaii.
•   Office of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Washington, D.C.
•   Airborne Interceptor Program Office, Los Angeles, California.
•   Missile and Space Intelligence Center, Redstone Arsenal, Alabama.

    Non-DOD Organizations

•   Central Intelligence Agency, Langley Virginia.

    To identify the overlap among the military services’ planned capabilities,
    we identified the roles and missions each service is responsible for
    performing and listed the existing and planned equipment that could be
    used for air superiority missions. We reviewed DOD directives, military
    doctrine, and previous roles and mission reports prepared by the
    Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the Commission on Roles and
    Missions of the Armed Forces. We asked weapon system program offices
    and/or operating commands, such as Air Combat Command, to identify the
    specific air superiority missions the equipment is capable of performing or
    is being designed to perform so we could identify the equipment that
    performs the same missions, that which is service unique, and that which
    is used by more than one service. We discussed the capabilities of existing
    and planned equipment with officials at the U.S. Central Command, the
    U.S. Pacific Command, the Joint Staff, and the services. From threat
    reports prepared by the Defense Intelligence Agency and the Central
    Intelligence Agency we compared U.S. capabilities to the capabilities of
    two major regional conflict countries—North Korea and Iraq. Our analyses
    covered three timeframes—fiscal years 1995, 2001, and 2010. We used
    DOD’s future years defense program database to obtain cost data for fiscal
    years 1996-2001. For cost data beyond this period, we used selected
    acquisition reports or estimates prepared by program offices.

    To determine whether the JWCA process was useful for making program
    and budget decisions, we reviewed the methodology and the results of the
    air superiority JWCA. Further, we reviewed applicable laws and DOD



    Page 17                                      GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
Chapter 1
Introduction




instructions involving the roles and responsibilities of the Chairman of the
Joint Chiefs of Staff for conducting and reporting on joint assessments. We
also discussed the usefulness and the strengths and weaknesses of the
JWCA with officials at the U.S. Central Command, the U.S. Pacific
Command, and the services.

We also relied on reports published by the Office of the Secretary of
Defense, Joint Staff, National Air Intelligence Center, Defense Science
Board, Congressional Budget Office, Ballistic Missile Defense
Organization, Air Force Roles and Missions Office, Commonwealth
Institute, RAND Corporation, Congressional Research Service, and our
prior reports (a list of our related products is provided at the end of this
report).

We performed our review from October 1994 through September 1996 in
accordance with generally accepted government auditing standards.




Page 18                                        GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
Chapter 2

The Services Have Overlapping Capabilities
to Perform Air Superiority Missions

                      Achieving air superiority is a high priority during any conflict. But
                      independent efforts by the services, without an adequate joint orientation,
                      has led to overlap among service capabilities that could be excessive.
                      Each military service plays a role in achieving air superiority and has
                      capabilities in four of the five missions. However, each service has
                      acquired mostly unique equipment to perform these missions, although
                      Congress advocates jointness among the services. DOD plans include over
                      $43 billion from fiscal year 1996 to fiscal year 2001 for the acquisition of
                      systems dedicated to the air superiority missions. Most of the planned
                      funding is for the acquisition of aircraft to defeat enemy aircraft, and
                      defensive systems to defeat enemy theater ballistic missiles.


                      Air Force doctrine states that the attainment of air superiority is normally
Air Superiority       one of the first and most important U.S. military goals in a conflict.
Includes Five         Without the attainment of air superiority, achieving success in a military
Missions              campaign is more difficult. Air superiority is the degree of dominance one
                      force possesses over another in the air, governing the extent to which air,
                      ground, and sea forces can achieve campaign objectives.

                      The Joint Chiefs of Staff, in its assessment of U.S. air superiority
                      capability, divided it into five distinct missions. Two missions involved
                      offensive air superiority operations to defeat enemy fighter aircraft and
                      surface-to-air defenses within enemy territory, and three involved
                      defensive air superiority to protect friendly territory against enemy
                      aircraft, cruise missiles, and theater ballistic missiles (see fig. 1).


                      Substantial funding is planned from fiscal year 1996 to fiscal year 2001 to
Funding Planned for   acquire weapon systems that are dedicated or closely related to
Air Superiority       achievement of air superiority missions. DOD plans include over $43 billion
Missions              for acquisition of dedicated systems, with about 47 percent of the funding
                      intended to modernize U.S. capabilities to defeat enemy fighters (offensive
                      operations) and aircraft (defensive operations) and about 44 percent
                      intended to modernize capabilities to defeat enemy theater ballistic
                      missiles.

                      Table 2.1 shows the amounts included in the fiscal years 1996-2001 defense
                      plan for acquisition of systems for each air superiority mission, as of
                      June 1995. Additional detail of the funding for each mission is included in
                      table II.1.




                      Page 19                                       GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
                                    Chapter 2
                                    The Services Have Overlapping Capabilities
                                    to Perform Air Superiority Missions




Table 2.1: Approximate DOD Future
Years Defense Program Acquisition   Then-year dollars in millions
Funding for the Missions of Air     Missile                                                          Amount                     Percent
Superiority, as of June 1995
                                    Offensive operations
                                    Defeat enemy fighters                                          $20,475.8                           47.5
                                    Defeat enemy surface-to-air missiles                                807.2                          01.9
                                    Defensive operations
                                                                                                              a
                                    Defeat enemy aircraft
                                    Defeat enemy cruise missiles                                      3,001.9                           7.0
                                    Defeat enemy theater ballistic missiles                          18,861.4                          43.7
                                    Total                                                          $43,146.3                          100.0
                                    a
                                     The funding to defeat enemy fighters and aircraft in offensive and defensive operations is not
                                    separable; all is included under offensive operations.



                                    In addition to acquisition of weapon systems primarily dedicated to
                                    achieving air superiority, there are other systems, primarily aircraft, that
                                    have a primary mission other than air superiority but that have a
                                    significant capability to contribute to air superiority missions. This
                                    category includes the Air Force F-15E and F-16, Navy F/A-18, Marine
                                    AV-8B, and the Joint Strike Fighter (JSF). Acquisition of F/A-18 fighters is
                                    expected to consume the greatest amount of resources in fiscal
                                    years 1996-2001, about $21 billion. Table II.2 includes further information
                                    on these systems.


                                    While some degree of overlapping capabilities may be necessary and/or
Overlap Among                       unavoidable, many of the systems that the services have or plan to acquire
Services’ Performance               to accomplish the five air superiority missions will have overlapping
of the Air Superiority              capabilities. Many of these overlapping capabilities have evolved over the
                                    years. Table 2.2 shows that each service has capabilities in each air
Missions                            superiority mission, except the Army does not have a capability to
                                    accomplish offensive operations against enemy fighters.




                                    Page 20                                                      GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
                                     Chapter 2
                                     The Services Have Overlapping Capabilities
                                     to Perform Air Superiority Missions




Table 2.2: Services’ Capability to
Perform Air Superiority Missions                                                                                                      Marine
                                     Air superiority missions                                Army           Navy Air Force            Corps
                                     Offensive operations
                                     Defeat enemy fighters                                                       X             X           X
                                     Defeat enemy surface-to- air defenses                        X              X             X           X
                                     Defensive operations
                                     Defeat enemy aircraft                                        X              X             X           X
                                     Defeat enemy cruise missiles                                 X              X             X           X
                                     Defeat enemy theater ballistic missiles                      X              X             X           X
                                     Note: “X” indicates that the service has or is acquiring capabilities to perform an air superiority
                                     mission.



                                     Appendix I shows the missions and the current and future equipment
                                     planned by each service to perform the five missions to achieve air
                                     superiority. Our display in appendix I of the current and future planned
                                     equipment shows that most equipment in the inventory has been procured
                                     by a service for operational forces within that service. Rarely have the
                                     same systems been used by more than one service, except for certain
                                     missiles and munitions. For example, the Air Force, the Navy, and the
                                     Marines have their own aircraft platforms capable of defeating enemy
                                     fighters and aircraft. The Navy operates F-14s and F/A-18s, the Air Force
                                     operates F-15s and F-16s, and the Marine Corps operates F/A-18s and
                                     AV-8Bs. The Air Force is developing the F-22 fighter and expects it to be in
                                     service in 2004, and the JSF is expected to be in service in 2010. The largest
                                     percentage of acquisition funding included in the DOD’s plans for air
                                     superiority (47 percent) is for defeating enemy fighters and aircraft. About
                                     44 percent of the funding is for acquisition of theater ballistic missile
                                     defenses.


Air Superiority Fighters             Although air superiority missions have many components, and many types
                                     of equipment are involved, the acquisition of U.S. fighter aircraft with the
                                     capability to defeat enemy fighters and other aircraft is expected to
                                     consume about 47 percent of the resources planned for air superiority
                                     missions. The Air Force, the Navy, and the Marines all have capabilities to
                                     defeat enemy fighters and other aircraft as a part of offensive and
                                     defensive air superiority missions using aircraft equipped with air-to-air
                                     missiles and guns. Although the missiles used are generally common for
                                     the air superiority missions regardless of the service (AIM-7 Sparrow,
                                     Advanced Medium Range Air-to-Air Missile, AIM-9 Sidewinder), the




                                     Page 21                                                          GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
                                            Chapter 2
                                            The Services Have Overlapping Capabilities
                                            to Perform Air Superiority Missions




                                            aircraft in use and being acquired are generally unique to each service.
                                            Table 2.3 shows the fighter aircraft systems in service or being acquired
                                            that have a capability to defeat enemy fighters and other aircraft. Some
                                            fighters have air superiority designated as their primary mission, while
                                            others have a significant capability to accomplish air superiority missions,
                                            but their primary missions are interdiction or are related to the attack of
                                            ground targets.

Table 2.3: Fighter Aircraft in Service or
Being Acquired That Have Capability                                                                        Air superiority primary
to Accomplish Air Superiority               Service                                      Aircraft system                 mission?
Missions Against Enemy Fighters and         Navy                                                   F-14                       Yes
Other Aircraft
                                            Navy                                                 F/A-18                        No
                                            Air Force                                          F-15 C/D                       Yes
                                            Air Force                                              F-16                        No
                                            Air Force                                             F-15E                        No
                                            Air Force                                              F-22                       Yes
                                            Marines                                               AV-8B                        No
                                            Marines                                              F/A-18                        No
                                            Joint                                                   JSF                        No

                                            Successful acquisition of systems that are commonly used among the
                                            services has been accomplished in air-to-air missiles and several
                                            air-to-ground munitions programs. However, despite Congress’ push for
                                            more efficient use of resources by emphasizing jointness among the
                                            services, few joint initiatives, particularly in the acquisition of aircraft,
                                            have been undertaken by DOD. Initiatives to acquire aircraft for joint
                                            service use in the past have often failed. For example, the Air Force was to
                                            develop and acquire the advanced tactical fighter (F-22), and the Navy was
                                            to develop and acquire an advanced tactical aircraft (A-12). These aircraft
                                            were both planned for use by both the Air Force and the Navy. Ultimately,
                                            the Secretary of Defense terminated the troubled A-12 program, and the
                                            Navy withdrew its support for the advanced tactical fighter program
                                            reportedly because of affordability problems.

                                            In a more recent attempt to reduce overlap in future aircraft systems, DOD
                                            initiated the Joint Advanced Strike Technology program in 1993. This
                                            program focuses on affordability and on developing common components
                                            such as engines, aviation electronics, ground support, training, and
                                            munitions for use in three similar, but different JSF variants—one for the
                                            Air Force, the Navy, and the Marine Corps. Operational capability for this
                                            “family” of JSF aircraft is tentatively scheduled for 2010.



                                            Page 22                                            GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
                                       Chapter 2
                                       The Services Have Overlapping Capabilities
                                       to Perform Air Superiority Missions




Theater Ballistic Missile              The Army, the Navy, the Air Force, and the Marine Corps each are
Defense                                developing some capabilities to defend against theater ballistic missiles by
                                       defeating them at one of three intercept areas—boost phase, midcourse
                                       phase, or terminal phase. DOD plans to fund nine systems from fiscal
                                       year 1996 through fiscal year 2001 to defeat enemy theater ballistic
                                       missiles. Table 2.4 lists the nine theater missile defense systems that were
                                       included in the DOD plans for fiscal years 1996-2001. The estimated cost to
                                       acquire these nine systems is $71 billion. Five of those planned
                                       systems—three Army, one Navy, and one Marine Corps—are designed to
                                       defeat theater ballistic missiles during the terminal phase of an enemy
                                       missile’s trajectories.

Table 2.4: Theater Ballistic Missile
Defense Systems                        Service                        System                       Intercept point
                                       Army                           Patriot Advanced Capability Terminal
                                                                      Level 3
                                       Army                           Theater High Altitude Air    Terminal and midcourse
                                                                      Defense System
                                       Army                           Medium Extended Air          Terminal
                                                                      Defense System
                                       Marine Corps                   Improved Hawk                Terminal
                                       Navy                           Navy Area System             Terminal
                                       Navy                           Navy Theater Wide System     Midcourse
                                       Air Force                      Airborne Laser               Boost
                                       Air Force and Navy             Airborne Interceptor         Boost and midcourse
                                       DOD                            Space-Based Laser            Boost




                                       Page 23                                               GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
Chapter 3

Air Superiority Joint Warfighting
Assessment Did Not Adequately Address
Some Key Issues
              JWCA teams began assessing the U.S. joint warfighting capabilities in 1994,
              and in early 1995 rated the overall capability to conduct air superiority
              missions as marginal, or acceptable with some risk, through fiscal year
              2001. This assessment process is an evolving one. Although the assessment
              was useful for displaying and rating the current joint force capability, it
              cannot be used to justify the spending planned by DOD for fighter aircraft
              planned for deployment beyond fiscal year 2001.

              The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff is expected to advise the
              Secretary of Defense on the priority of requirements identified by the CINCs
              and the extent to which service program recommendations and budget
              proposals conform to these priorities. Further, the Chairman is expected
              to submit to the Secretary, alternative program recommendations and
              budget proposals. Although the assessment was useful in pointing out
              several inadequacies in forces that exist at this time, it did not adequately
              address several major issues regarding overlap of capabilities, priorities of
              future acquisitions of air superiority weapon systems, or alternative means
              of meeting the highest priority requirements. Further, it did not assign
              ratings of warfighting capability over a long enough period of time to be
              useful for establishing acquisition and budget priorities.

              To assess the joint capability, the JWCA team evaluated the capabilities of
              the services to perform air superiority missions. The assessment was
              based on the services’ ability to accomplish nine functions that are
              determinants of the overall ability to accomplish the missions. For
              example, to defeat enemy fighters, the JWCA evaluated the effectiveness of
              the capabilities to integrate command, control, communications,
              computers, and intelligence; deploy assets to the theater; plan missions,
              detect, identify, track, engage, and kill targets; and assess damage.

              A formal report of the assessment was not made. Although a spokesman
              for the JWCA team told us that recommendations were made to the
              Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff for preparation of the Chairman’s
              program assessment, they would not share their recommendations with
              us.




              Page 24                                       GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
                             Chapter 3
                             Air Superiority Joint Warfighting
                             Assessment Did Not Adequately Address
                             Some Key Issues




                             In February 1995, the JWCA rated overall air superiority capabilities as
Joint Staff Rated            acceptable with some risk through 2001. Aspects of several functional
Overall Air                  elements, however, were rated inadequate.
Superiority Capability
                             In 1994, the JWCA, under the direction of the Vice Chairman, began making
as Acceptable With           assessments to evaluate the joint warfighting capabilities of U.S. military
Some Risk                    forces to perform designated missions. To conduct its assessment of air
                             superiority, the JWCA divided the five air superiority missions into nine
                             functional elements. Based on a combination of military judgment and
                             existing analyses, they rated the capability to effectively accomplish each
                             functional element through fiscal year 2001. One of three possible ratings
                             was assigned to each element as follows:

                         •   inadequate (high risk),
                         •   marginal (acceptable with some risk), or
                         •   adequate (low risk).

                             The marginal rating was determined to be an acceptable level to achieve in
                             a realistic, fiscally constrained environment.

                             The Joint Staff briefed each CINC to obtain concurrence with the ratings
                             and eventually achieved a consensus among the Commanders and the
                             Joint Staff. The assessment provides an overview of the capabilities of the
                             joint forces to accomplish the nine functions as they affect each of the five
                             air superiority missions. The assessment permits a rapid identification of
                             the immediate problem areas.


Several Elements Rated       Although the overall assessments for the air superiority missions were that
Inadequate                   the capabilities were acceptable with some risk through fiscal year 2001,
                             several elements were rated inadequate. DOD officials told us that all the
                             services are working to rectify one of the long-standing deficiencies.

                             The process used by the team to make its assessment provided a useful,
                             though limited, result and used a meaningful method of displaying the
                             results. The details of the assessment were classified by DOD. However, the
                             results of the assessment do not justify the acquisition of major aircraft
                             systems like the F-22 because correction of the functions rated inadequate
                             would not necessarily be impacted by acquisition of new aircraft.




                             Page 25                                       GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
                         Chapter 3
                         Air Superiority Joint Warfighting
                         Assessment Did Not Adequately Address
                         Some Key Issues




                         Without broad, comprehensive assessments, the decisionmakers cannot
The 1995 Air             be sure that they have sufficient information to make the difficult tradeoff
Superiority Joint        decisions that may be required. At a minimum, we believe that such
Warfighting              assessments should, for the air superiority mission (1) assess the relative
                         merits of retiring assets, reducing procurement quantities, or canceling
Assessment Has           acquisition programs where excesses exist or where substantial payoff is
Limitations and Did      not clear and (2) determine the most cost-effective means to satisfy
                         deficiencies. Conducting such assessments could help determine what
Not Address Major        priority should be given to competing programs, whether programmed
Issues                   investments should continue to be funded, and whether new investments
                         should be made.

                         The use of a joint perspective to assess U.S. warfighting capability has the
                         potential to provide decisionmakers better insight into the capability of
                         the entire U.S. military force to perform particular missions than by
                         assessing an individual service’s capability to perform a particular mission.
                         However, there were limitations in the assessments of the air superiority
                         mission and some major issues were not addressed.


Assessment Limitations   DOD limited its assessment to the planned capability contained in the
                         future years defense program that covers fiscal years 1996-2001. Also, this
                         assessment did not evaluate the overlap of capability in each mission and
                         offered no alternative means of achieving the capabilities contained in the
                         program.

                         For the warfighter who is concerned about the U.S. capability to fight a
                         war in the near future, a 6-year period may be sufficient. However, to
                         improve the usefulness of these assessments to assist program and budget
                         decisions, comprehensive capability ratings over a longer period are
                         necessary. Intelligence estimates of the projected threat may cover as
                         much as a 15-year period. Many major weapon systems included in the
                         fiscal years 1996-2001 defense plan will not be in the active inventory until
                         long after fiscal year 2001 and, in some cases, are intended to respond to
                         threats that may not exist until after fiscal year 2001. Thus, the air
                         superiority joint warfighting assessment through fiscal year 2001 may not
                         include the impact of significant changes in U.S. weapon capabilities or
                         significant changes in the projected threat expected to come about after
                         the 6 years covered in the defense program.

                         Another limitation was that the assessments do not examine the
                         cost-effectiveness of alternative mixes of weapon systems to achieve the



                         Page 26                                       GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
                   Chapter 3
                   Air Superiority Joint Warfighting
                   Assessment Did Not Adequately Address
                   Some Key Issues




                   objectives of the air superiority mission. For example, the JWCA assessed
                   current plans to upgrade theater missile defenses and to upgrade fighter
                   aircraft; yet, they did not identify other possible mixes or combinations of
                   weapons to achieve the objectives.


Major Issues Not   As the nation attempts to achieve a balanced budget, our evaluations of
Addressed          U.S. air power missions and acquisition plans1 showed that some programs
                   would only marginally improve existing capabilities at a very high cost.
                   The timing of others may be questionable in view of the changed security
                   environment. For some programs, less costly alternatives could be
                   pursued to meet identified needs.

                   An air superiority program that appears to be proceeding at an
                   unnecessarily fast pace is the Air Force F-22 fighter program. The Air
                   Force is proceeding with its plan to have a high degree of concurrency in
                   the development and production of the F-22 aircraft. It plans to begin to
                   acquire F-22 fighters in fiscal year 1999 and to rapidly accelerate the pace
                   of production to 48 aircraft a year.2 The Air Force plans to begin initial
                   operations with F-22s in November 2004. Our analyses showed that the
                   existing U.S. frontline fighter, the F-15, compared favorably to the
                   projected frontline aircraft of potential adversaries used in the
                   assessments through fiscal year 2010. DOD told us that there are several
                   current or soon to be fielded foreign fighters that are at parity with the
                   F-15. Although we recognize several foreign fighter aircraft are in
                   development that are projected to be roughly comparable with the F-15C
                   when those foreign aircraft are ultimately developed and fielded, it is
                   uncertain how quickly the aircraft will be produced. It is also unlikely that
                   large quantities will be available and affordable by countries that the
                   United States considers to be potential adversaries. Additionally, there are
                   risks associated with the concurrent development and production planned
                   for the F-22, risks that DOD and we have disagreed about, but which need
                   to be an important consideration in a decision to move into production of
                   a high technology system such as the F-22.

                   We previously recommended that, at a minimum, the Joint Staff should
                   assess the impact on joint warfighting capability of delaying the F-22’s



                   1
                    Combat Air Power: Joint Mission Assessment Needed Before Making Program and Budget Decisions
                   (GAO/NSIAD-96-177, Sept. 20, 1996).
                   2
                    Tactical Aircraft: Concurrency in Development and Production of F-22 Aircraft Should Be Reduced
                   (GAO/NSIAD-95-59, Apr. 19, 1995).



                   Page 27                                                    GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
Chapter 3
Air Superiority Joint Warfighting
Assessment Did Not Adequately Address
Some Key Issues




initial operations to 2010 and adjusting acquisition plans to slow the
acceleration of the production pace and reduce the degree of concurrency.

Another shortcoming in the assessment was that it did not consider
whether the F-15 could be replaced by the JSF instead of the F-22 because
the JSF, with some capabilities similar to the F-22s, is also supposed to
have low-observable characteristics and the capability to launch missiles
against enemy aircraft. The JSF average unit procurement cost is expected
to be lower3 than an F-22 and is scheduled to become operational in 2010,
compared to 2004 for the F-22.

The assessment also did not deal with the issue of whether there is the
need to replace F-15s with F-22s on a one-for-one basis. The Air Force
plans to replace four wings of F-15s with about four wings of F-22s (438).
Yet, an Air Force analysis indicates that the F-22 would be 12 times more
effective than the F-15C in defeating the same threat.

The assessment, moreover, did not address the issue of whether there was
a more viable alternative to the Navy’s F/A-18E/F fighter program. Our
recent report4 on the F/A-18E/F program has shown that deficiencies in
the current F/A-18C/D range, carrier recovery payload, survivability, and
system growth the Navy cited in justifying the F/A-18E/F program either
do not exist, can be corrected with minimal changes to the F/A-18C/D, or
will only be marginally improved in the F/A-18E/F model. The assessment
did not discuss the benefits and drawbacks of canceling the F/A-18E/F and
continuing with the less costly F/A-18C/D until the JSF becomes
operational.

A major issue confronting DOD and Congress is the need to pursue three
new tactical aircraft programs that will cost an estimated $355.7 billion in
fiscal year 1997 dollars, according to the Congressional Budget Office.
However, the assessment did not provide an aggregate assessment of the
quantity of U.S. aircraft with air superiority capabilities compared to
potential adversaries. Even with the drawdown of the U.S. fighter
inventory over the past few years, its current and future inventory
numbers about 2,600 frontline fighters (F-14s, F-15s, F-16s, and F-18s).

The size and the makeup of the U.S. theater ballistic missile defense is
another major issue confronting DOD and Congress; yet the JWCA did not

3
 CBO Testimony on Modernizing Tactical Aircraft (June 27, 1996).
4
 Naval Aviation: F/A-18E/F Will Provide Marginal Operational Improvement at High Cost
(GAO/NSIAD-96-98, June 18, 1996).



Page 28                                                     GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
                  Chapter 3
                  Air Superiority Joint Warfighting
                  Assessment Did Not Adequately Address
                  Some Key Issues




                  address this issue. Pursuing all nine systems could cost an estimated
                  $71 billion, which is probably understated considering that most of these
                  systems are technologically risky and remain unproven. For example,
                  none of the nine tests conducted on a Navy and on an Army system were a
                  complete success. However, the JWCA did not address the issue of what
                  was the most cost-effective mix of theater ballistic missiles required to
                  meet mission requirements.


                  It is important that U.S. forces be properly equipped to successfully
Conclusions       achieve air superiority and that the effectiveness of this equipment be
                  continually modernized. At a time when the country is striving to achieve a
                  balanced budget, the JWCA on air superiority is not ensuring that resources
                  are being applied in an efficient, economical, and effective manner.
                  Moreover, the assessments did not address the key issues involving joint
                  operations and requirements facing the air superiority missions nor do
                  they attempt to identify opportunities to reduce duplications and overlaps
                  in capabilities without unacceptable effects on force capabilities.

                  We are not making any new recommendations in this report. In our overall
                  report on combat air power, we recommended that the Secretary of
                  Defense, along with the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, develop an
                  assessment process that yields more comprehensive information in key
                  mission areas. In making this recommendation, we included the offensive
                  and defensive aspects of the air superiority mission and the results of this
                  review of the assessments conducted by the JWCA team. We said the
                  recommended process could be achieved by broadening the JWCAs or
                  developing an alternative mechanism. DOD partially concurred with the
                  recommendation, agreeing that analytical support for overall
                  decision-making can be improved, but disagreeing that the Secretary is
                  currently receiving inadequate advice.

                  We believe the concerns identified in this report about DOD’s assessments
                  of air superiority mission areas should be addressed as part of DOD’s
                  efforts to implement our prior recommendation. Specifically, we believe
                  the assessments need to

              •   cover a longer period to permit better analysis of projected capabilities of
                  both the U.S. and potential adversaries;
              •   include cost-effectiveness analyses of alternative means to achieve U.S.
                  objectives;
              •   identify unnecessary overlap and duplication;



                  Page 29                                       GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
    Chapter 3
    Air Superiority Joint Warfighting
    Assessment Did Not Adequately Address
    Some Key Issues




•   include comparisons and analyses of U.S. capabilities to conduct air
    superiority missions to capabilities of adversaries; and
•   address major issues including (1) the need to proceed with three new
    tactical fighters, (2) the need to proceed with a highly concurrent schedule
    and rapid production pace increase for the F-22 program, (3) the need to
    replace each F-15 with an F-22, (4) the potential for replacing F-15s with
    the JSF rather than F-22s, (5) the need for procuring the F/A-18E/F rather
    than modifying F/A-18C/Ds, (6) the most cost-effective mix of theater
    ballistic missile defenses required to meet mission requirements, and
    (7) U.S. capabilities to defend against certain cruise missile threats.




    Page 30                                      GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
Page 31   GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
Appendix I

Services’ Identification of Capabilities for
Achieving Air Superiority

Table I.1: Platforms Contributing to Air
Superiority                                                   Mission                           Joint
                                                                                 Current          Future
                                           Offensive counter air
                                           Defeat enemy fighters                                  JSF




                                           Airfield attack only




                                           Offensive counter air
                                           Defeat enemy surface-to-air defense                    JSF




                                           Defensive counter air
                                           Defeat enemy fighters                                  JSF




                                           Defensive counter air
                                           Defeat enemy cruise missiles                           JSF




                                           Ground attack only




                                           Page 32                                     GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
                                             Appendix I
                                             Services’ Identification of Capabilities for
                                             Achieving Air Superiority




             Air Force                           Army                                Navy                             Marine Corps
Current           Future           Current           Future            Current              Future          Current         Future


AWACS             F-22                                                 F-14                 F/A-18 E/F      F/A-18 C/D      F/A-18E/F
F-15 A-D                                                               F/A-18 A-D                           AV-8B
F-15E                                                                  E-2C
F-16
F-117
F-111
B-1
B-2
B-52


F-16 (HTS)                         Multiple Launch                     F-14                 F/A-18 E/F      F/A-18 C/D      F/A-18E/F
                                   Rocket System
F-4G                                                                   F/A-18 A-D
EF-111                                                                 EA-6B
F-111
F-117
B-1
B-2
B-52


F-15 A-D          F-22             Hawk (Guard                         F-14                 F/A-18 E/F      F/A-18 C/D      F/A-18E/F
                                   only)
F-15 E            Airborne laser                                       F/A-18 A-D           Various Ships   AV-8B
F-16                                                                   Various ships                        Hawk mobility
F-111 (partial)                                                        E-2C
AWACS


F-15 A-D          F-22             Hawk (Guard       Medium         F-14                    F/A-18 E/F      F/A-18 C/D      F/A-18E/F
                                   only)             Extended Air
                                                     Defense System
F-15 E            Airborne Laser   Patriot                             F/A-18 A-D           Various ships   Hawk mobility
F-16                                                                   Various ships
F-111                                                                  E-2C
B-52
B-1
                                                                                                                                (continued)




                                             Page 33                                                     GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
Appendix I
Services’ Identification of Capabilities for
Achieving Air Superiority




                   Mission                                    Joint
                                               Current          Future
Defensive counter air
Defeat enemy theater missile defenses                           Space-based lasera




                                                                Boost phase intercept




Ground attack only                                              JSF




Page 34                                              GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
                                          Appendix I
                                          Services’ Identification of Capabilities for
                                          Achieving Air Superiority




           Air Force                          Army                                  Navy                            Marine Corps
Current        Future           Current          Future              Current             Future           Current           Future


               Airborne laser   Patriot          Theater High        F-14D               F-14 D (with                       Hawk with
                                                 Altitude Air                            inteceptor                         Theater
                                                 Defense                                 missile)                           Missile
                                                                                                                            Defense
                                                                                                                            Upgrade
                                                 Medium                                  Aegis ships                        Medium
                                                 Extended Air                                                               Extended Air
                                                 Defense System                                                             Defense
                                                                                                                            System
                                                 Patriot                                 Area system
                                                 Advanced
                                                 Capability -
                                                 Level 3
                                                                                         Theater-wide
                                                                                         system
F-15 A-D                                                             F/A-18A-D           F/A-18E/F        F/A-18C/D         F/A-18E/F
F-15E
F-16
B-52
B-1
F-111
                                          Notes:
                                          1. The platforms and munitions listed in the “Current” columns represent what the services use
                                          today.
                                          2. The platforms and munitions listed in the “Future” columns represent what the services plan to
                                          buy or upgrade in the future and include new systems or major capability improvements of
                                          existing system.
                                          3. JSF - Joint Strike Fighter.
                                          4. AWACS - Airborne Warning and Control System.
                                          a
                                          This is a DOD-managed system that can potentially be used by all the services.




                                          Page 35                                                       GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
                                    Appendix I
                                    Services’ Identification of Capabilities for
                                    Achieving Air Superiority




Table 1.2: Missiles and Munitions
Contributing to Air Superiority                        Mission                                         Joint
                                                                                   Current              Future
                                    Offensive counter air
                                    Defeat enemy fighters                          Sparrow              AIM-9X
                                                                                   Sidewinder           Advanced
                                                                                                        Medium Range
                                                                                                        Air-to-Air
                                                                                                        Missile—Improvement
                                                                                   Advanced Medium
                                                                                   Range Air-to-Air
                                                                                   Missile
                                    Airfield attack                                Maverick             Joint Direct Attack
                                                                                                        Munition


                                                                                   Guided Bomb          Joint Standoff Weapon
                                                                                   Unit 24
                                                                                   Mark 84




                                    Offensive counter air
                                    Defeat enemy surface-to-air defenses           High Speed Anti-     Joint Direct Attack
                                                                                   Radiation Missile    Munition

                                                                                   Maverick             Joint Standoff Weapon


                                                                                   Mark 82, 84




                                    Page 36                                               GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
                                            Appendix I
                                            Services’ Identification of Capabilities for
                                            Achieving Air Superiority




           Air Force                          Army                                 Navy                         Marine Corps
Current           Future          Current        Future             Current                Future     Current         Future


                                                                    Phoenix




Air-to-Ground     GPS Aided                                         Standoff Land
Munition 130,     Munition Wind                                     Attack Missile
142               Corrected                                         (extended
                  Munition                                          range)
Cluster Bomb                                                        Walleye
Unit 5
Cluster Bomb                                                        Rockeye
Unit 87
Conventional                                                        Laser Guided
Air Launched                                                        Bomb 83
Cruise Missile
Guided Bomb                                                         Mark 83
Unit 10,15, 27,
28
Mark 82                                                             Tomahawk


Cluster Bomb      GPS Aided       Army Tactical Army Tactical       Guided Bomb
Unit 58,87, 97    Munition        Missile System Missile System     Unit 24
                                                 Improvements
Guided Bomb       Wind                                              Walleye
Unit 10, 12,15,   Corrected
24, 27            Munition
Conventional                                                        Rockeye
Air Launched
Cruise Missile
Sensor Fused                                                        Laser Guided
Weapon                                                              Bomb 83
                                                                    Mark 83
                                                                    Tomahawk
                                                                                                                          (continued)




                                            Page 37                                                 GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
Appendix I
Services’ Identification of Capabilities for
Achieving Air Superiority




                   Mission                                        Joint
                                               Current              Future
Defensive counter air
Defeat enemy fighters                          Sparrow              AIM-9X




                                               Sidewinder           Advanced Medium
                                                                    Range Air-to-Air
                                                                    Missile—Improvement

                                               Advanced Medium Avenger Stinger
                                               Range Air-to-Air
                                               Missile
                                               Stinger




Defensive counter air:
Defeat enemy cruise missiles                   Sparrow              AIM-9X




                                               Sidewinder           Advanced Medium
                                                                    Range Air-to-Air
                                                                    Missile—Improvement

                                               Advanced Medium Avenger Stinger
                                               Range Air-to-Air
                                               Missile
                                               Stinger




Defensive counter air
Defeat enemy theater ballistic missiles




Page 38                                                  GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
                                    Appendix I
                                    Services’ Identification of Capabilities for
                                    Achieving Air Superiority




          Air Force                     Army                               Navy                                Marine Corps
Current         Future   Current          Future            Current                Future            Current         Future


                         Patriot          Medium         Close-In      Close-In                      Hawk mobility   Hawk with
                         Advanced         Extended Air   Weapon System Weapon                                        Theater
                         Capability 2     Defense System               System                                        Missile
                         Hawk                                          Blocks 1A,                                    Defense
                         (National                                     1B, 1C                                        Upgrade
                         Guard only)
                                          Bradley Stinger   Rolling Airframe Rolling                 Stinger         Stinger
                                                            Missile—Block 0 Airframe
                                                                             Missile—
                                                                             Block 1
                                                            NATO Sea               Evolved Sea
                                                            Sparrow                Sparrow

                                                            Standard               Standard
                                                            Missile 2 Block        Missile 2
                                                            IIIA                   Blocks IIIB, IV
                                                            Phoenix


                         Patriot          Medium         Close-In      Close-In                      Hawk mobility   Hawk with
                         Advanced         Extended Air   Weapon System Weapon                                        Theater
                         Capability 2     Defense System               System                                        Missile
                                                                       Blocks 1A,                                    Defense
                                                                       1B, 1C                                        Upgrade
                         Hawk             Bradley Stinger   Rolling Airframe Rolling
                         (National                          Missile—Block 0 Airframe
                         Guard only)                                         Missile—
                                                                             Block 1
                                                            NATO Sea               Evolved Sea
                                                            Sparrow                Sparrow

                                                            Standard               Standard
                                                            Missile 2 Block        Missile 2
                                                            IIIA                   Blocks IIIB, IV
                                                            Phoenix


                                          Patriot                                  Standard                          Hawk with
                                          Advanced                                 Missile 2,                        Theater
                                          Capability 3                             Block IVA,                        Missile
                                                                                   Block Theater                     Defense
                                                                                   Missile                           Upgrade
                                                                                   Defense
                                          Medium
                                          Extended Air
                                          Defense System
                                                                                                                         (continued)




                                    Page 39                                                      GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
Appendix I
Services’ Identification of Capabilities for
Achieving Air Superiority




                   Mission                                    Joint
                                               Current          Future




Ground attack only                                              Joint Standoff Weapon




Page 40                                              GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
                                   Appendix I
                                   Services’ Identification of Capabilities for
                                   Achieving Air Superiority




          Air Force                  Army                                  Navy                              Marine Corps
Current         Future   Current        Future              Current               Future           Current           Future
                                        Theater High
                                        Altitude Air
                                        Defense
                                                            Maverick
                                                            Rockeye
                                   Notes:
                                   1. The missiles and munitions listed in the “Current” column represent what the services use today.
                                   2. The missiles and munitions listed in the “Future” columns represent what the services will buy
                                   or upgrade in the future and include new systems or major capability improvements of existing
                                   systems.
                                   3. NATO — North Atlantic Treaty Organization.
                                   4. GPS — Global Positioning System.




                                   Page 41                                                     GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
Appendix II

Funding for Missions of Air Superiority



Table II.1: Approximate DOD Future Year Defense Program Acquisition Funding for the Missions of Air Superiority, as of
June 1995
Then-year dollars in thousands
                                                        Fiscal years
Missions                        1996          1997           1998          1999           2000           2001             Total
Conduct offensive operations:
Defeat enemy fighters
F-15                        $92,902       $141,572       $240,911      $302,728       $284,147       $262,121     $1,324,381
F-22                      2,138,718      2,048,435      2,346,248      2,214,665      3,014,556      3,933,995    15,696,617
F-14                        103,537        206,866        225,499        245,931        193,996       121,697       1,097,526
Advanced Medium             266,768        261,160        259,845        243,397        252,639       286,668       1,570,477
Range Air-to-Air
Missile
Tactical Air-to-Air            73,673      110,275        142,661        181,498        138,691       139,984        786,782
Missiles
Defeat enemy surface-
to-air missiles
High Speed Anti-                3,348        4,226          2,586          2,027              0              0           12,187
Radiation Missile
F-4G Wild Weasel                 615           136              0              0              0              0             751
EA-6B                              0        59,422         81,304        143,756        152,454       208,738        645,674
Compass Call                   18,914       23,918         29,340         18,781         19,399         19,983       130,335
Manned Destructive              7,408        2,147          2,150          2,130          2,207          2,166           18,208
Suppression
Conduct defensive operations:
Defeat enemy aircrafta
Defeat enemy cruise missiles
Airborne Warning and        356,008        342,620        126,151        117,731        122,318       125,746       1,190,574
Control System
E-2C Hawkeye                216,673        303,278        312,945        320,872        324,665       332,921       1,811,354
Defeat enemy theater
ballistic missiles
Theater High Altitude       589,927        740,888        867,941      1,269,833        928,486       862,193       5,259,268
Area Defense System
Airborne Laserb                19,954       19,954              0              0              0              0           39,908
Navy Area System            254,370        402,161        440,717        499,689        560,328       494,517       2,651,782
Navy Theater-wide              30,442       33,400              0              0              0              0           63,842
System
Medium Extened Air             30,442       33,400              0              0              0              0           63,842
Defense Systemc
Airborne Interceptor           49,061       44,300         66,300         72,300              0              0       231,961
Patriot Advanced            690,100        616,670        582,800        453,300        516,700       299,900       3,159,470
Capability Level 3
                                                                                                                  (continued)


                                          Page 42                                           GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
                                            Appendix II
                                            Funding for Missions of Air Superiority




Then-year dollars in thousands
                                                             Fiscal years
Missions                          1996           1997             1998              1999               2000              2001               Total
Marine Corps’ Hawk               30,794         32,883          25,380                596               614             8,260              98,527
Space-Based Laser                72,832         28,372          28,894            28,593             28,304            27,732           214,727
Other                        917,668        920,333         1,163,026          1,022,263         1,448,013         1,606,729          7,078,032
Total                     $5,964,154      $6,376,416       $6,944,698        $7,140,090         $7,987,517        $8,733,350       $43,146,225

                                            Notes:
                                            1. Acquisition funding includes research, development, test, and evaluation and procurement of
                                            aircraft and missiles as of June 1995.
                                            a
                                             The funding to defeat enemy fighters and aircraft in offensive and defensive operations are not
                                            separable and are essentially all included under the offensive operations.
                                            b
                                             According to an Air Force official, the Air Force has programmed $693,200,000 in additional
                                            funds for Airborne Laser between fiscal years 1997 and 2001.
                                            c
                                             According to a Medium Extended Air Defense System project office cost official, the Army has
                                            requested $533 million additional funds for the program for fiscal years 1997-2001.




                                            Page 43                                                      GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
                                              Appendix II
                                              Funding for Missions of Air Superiority




Table II.2: Approximate DOD Future Year Defense Program Funding for Weapon Systems With Some Capability, Not
Primary Responsibility, for the Missions of Air Superiority
Then-year dollars in thousands
                                                                 Fiscal years
Missions                              1996               1997             1998             1999             2000            2001             Total
Conduct Offensive Operations:
Defeat enemy fighters
F-15E                             $293,559          $280,705         $236,986         $232,245         $262,026         $289,974       $1,595,495
F-16                               561,455           456,162           499,594         521,707          565,321          563,848        3,168,087
F-111                                  597                   0                  0              0                0                0               597
F/A-18                            1,886,685        2,938,028         3,561,884       4,196,792        4,245,141        4,206,668       21,035,198
AV-8B                              208,890           406,260           379,072         418,489          408,367          411,050        2,232,128
JSF                                331,156           480,061           680,611         841,965          664,507          938,805        3,937,105
Defeat enemy surface-to- air
defenses                                 0                   0                  0              0                0                0                0
Conduct Defensive Operations:
                                          a                   a                 a               a                a                a                a
Defeat enemy aircraft
Defeat enemy cruise missiles             0                   0                  0              0                0                0                0
Defeat enemy theater ballistic
missiles                                 0                   0                  0              0                0                0                0
Total                            $3,282,342       $4,561,216        $5,358,147      $6,211,198      $6,145,362       $6,410,345       $31,968,610
                                              Note:
                                              1. Acquisition funding includes research, development, test, and evaluation and procurement of
                                              aircraft as of June 1995.
                                              a
                                               The funding to defeat enemy fighters and aircraft in offensive and defensive operations are not
                                              separable and are essentially all included under the offensive operations.




                                              Page 44                                                      GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
Appendix III

Comments From the Department of Defense


Note: GAO comments
supplementing those in the
report text appear at the
end of this appendix.




See comment 1.




See comment 2.




See comment 3.




                             Page 45   GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
                 Appendix III
                 Comments From the Department of Defense




See comment 3.




See comment 3.




See comment 4.




See comment 4.




                 Page 46                                   GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
                 Appendix III
                 Comments From the Department of Defense




See comment 5.




See commnet 5.




See comment 6.




                 Page 47                                   GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
Appendix III
Comments From the Department of Defense




Page 48                                   GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
                           Appendix III
                           Comments From the Department of Defense




Now on pp. 7, 21-22.

See comment 7.



Now on pp. 27-28 and 30.

See comment 8.



See pp. 27-28.

See comment 9.

Now on pp. 28 and 30.


See comment 10.




Now on pp. 28 and 30.


See comment 11.


Now on pp. 8 and 28.

See comment 12.




                           Page 49                                   GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
                       Appendix III
                       Comments From the Department of Defense




Now on p. 25.
See comment 13.



Now on pp. 7 and 28.

See comment 14.




                       Page 50                                   GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
               Appendix III
               Comments From the Department of Defense




               The following are our comments on the Department of Defense’s (DOD)
               letter dated October 22, 1996.


               1. This report does not suggest, imply, or infer that air power is not
GAO Comments   important or that the threat does not warrant investment. The purpose of
               this report is to identify overlap of the military services’ capabilities to
               achieve air superiority and evaluate the utility of the joint warfighting
               assessment process.

               2. The capabilities of the specific threat aircraft mentioned by DOD were
               considered in the joint warfighting capability assessment (JWCA) for
               1996-2001. The JWCA concluded that U.S. capability to defeat enemy
               aircraft through fiscal year 2001 was marginal (acceptable with some
               degree of risk). The JWCA considered not only the aerodynamic and
               propulsion qualities of individual threat aircraft mentioned by DOD in its
               comments, but also the closely related functions of command, control,
               communications, mission planning, target detection, tracking,
               engagement, and destruction.

               3. Our review evaluated U.S. capability to achieve air superiority, which
               was 1 of 10 missions assessed by the Joint Staff in its JWCAs. The Joint Staff
               did not identify air dominance as one of its missions; however, redefining
               the objective as air dominance could have significant implications for
               future programming of forces.

               4. This report specifically deals with the air superiority JWCA, not the entire
               process to develop modernization plans and scrutinize programs. We do
               believe JWCA can be substantially improved, as can the analytical support,
               and DOD partially concurred with that evaluation in response to the
               companion report Combat Air Power: Joint Mission Assessments Needed
               Before Making Program and Budget Decisions (GAO/NSIAD-96-177, Sept. 20,
               1996). Although we disagree that further criticism of the DOD decision
               processes is intended in this report, there are many facets of DOD’s
               assessment process that we believe can and should be improved. We have
               and will continue to provide appropriate reports to DOD for comment.

               5. DOD did not comment on the specific issues we raised about the JWCA.

               6. The intent of this report is to show overlap in air superiority capabilities
               and raise specific issues that the air superiority JWCA could address to
               improve the analytical support for decisionmakers. In this report, we have



               Page 51                                        GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
Appendix III
Comments From the Department of Defense




not intended to make a case for overturning the decisions made by DOD.
However, because of concerns we have raised in other reports about
tactical aircraft systems (listed on the last page of this report), we believe
those concerns should be addressed by JWCA from the point of view of
joint warfighting capabilities.

7. The report clearly notes that these aircrafts’ primary missions are
air-to-ground. However, their significant air-to-air capabilities cannot be
ignored and are available to the wartime commander.

8. Our prior report demonstrated the high degree of concurrency that
exists with the F-22 program. The ramp up of production from 4, to 12, 24,
and 36 aircraft a year under the low-rate production phase, and planned
initiation of long lead parts procurement for 48 a year essentially
represents a plan to achieve full-rate production before initial operational
test and evaluation is completed.

9. We do not make threat projections. The threat information came
directly from DOD intelligence agencies.

10. We believe this issue is appropriate for an expanded JWCA on air
superiority. We believe DOD’s air superiority JWCA should analyze the need
to replace F-15s with F-22s on a one-for-one basis.

11. We believe that the Joint Staff’s air superiority JWCA should analyze this
as a possible option in the context of joint force capabilities.

12. The report was clarified to identify the specific aircraft that make up
the 2,600 frontline fighters. None of them are A-10s.

13. This comment has been added to the body of the report.

14. We recognize that the E/F will provide some improvements over the
C/D; however, we believe the C/D’s current capabilities are adequate to
accomplish its assigned mission. Based on the marginal nature of the
improvements and the E/F’s projected cost, we believe an analysis
between these two models should be included in the JWCA.




Page 52                                        GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
Appendix IV

Major Contributors to This Report


                        Robert D. Murphy, Assistant Director
National Security and   David B. Best, Evaluator
International Affairs
Division, Washington,
D.C.
                        Richard L. Strittmatter, Evaluator-in-Charge
Chicago Field Office    Edward R. Browning, Evaluator
                        Don M. Springman, Evaluator


                        Barbara Haynes, Site Senior
Atlanta Field Office    John Randall, Evaluator


                        Brenda Waterfield, Site Senior
Norfolk Field Office    Henry Arzadon, Evaluator




                        Page 53                                        GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
Appendix IV
Major Contributors to This Report




Page 54                             GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
Appendix IV
Major Contributors to This Report




Page 55                             GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
Related GAO Products


                  Combat Air Power: Assessment of Joint Close Support Requirements and
                  Capabilities Is Needed (GAO/NSIAD-96-45, June 28, 1996).

                  U.S. Combat Air Power: Reassessing Plans to Modernize Interdiction
                  Capabilities Could Save Billions (GAO/NSIAD-96-72, May 13, 1996).

                  Tactical Aircraft: F-15 Replacement Is Premature as Currently Planned
                  (GAO/NSIAD-94-118, Mar. 25, 1994).




(707047/707224)   Page 56                                     GAO/NSIAD-97-77 Combat Air Power
Ordering Information

The first copy of each GAO report and testimony is free.
Additional copies are $2 each. Orders should be sent to the
following address, accompanied by a check or money order
made out to the Superintendent of Documents, when
necessary. VISA and MasterCard credit cards are accepted, also.
Orders for 100 or more copies to be mailed to a single address
are discounted 25 percent.

Orders by mail:

U.S. General Accounting Office
P.O. Box 6015
Gaithersburg, MD 20884-6015

or visit:

Room 1100
700 4th St. NW (corner of 4th and G Sts. NW)
U.S. General Accounting Office
Washington, DC

Orders may also be placed by calling (202) 512-6000
or by using fax number (301) 258-4066, or TDD (301) 413-0006.

Each day, GAO issues a list of newly available reports and
testimony. To receive facsimile copies of the daily list or any
list from the past 30 days, please call (202) 512-6000 using a
touchtone phone. A recorded menu will provide information on
how to obtain these lists.

For information on how to access GAO reports on the INTERNET,
send an e-mail message with "info" in the body to:

info@www.gao.gov

or visit GAO’s World Wide Web Home Page at:

http://www.gao.gov




PRINTED ON    RECYCLED PAPER
United States                       Bulk Rate
General Accounting Office      Postage & Fees Paid
Washington, D.C. 20548-0001           GAO
                                 Permit No. G100
Official Business
Penalty for Private Use $300

Address Correction Requested